E-BIKE RIDERS GET NEW SHIMANO STEPS COMPONENT UPGRADES
Speed sensor integration, connectivity and aesthetic upgrades for Shimano’s city e-bike components
Shimano is adding a new e-bike specific rotor and updating its E-6000 series e-bike Drive Unit, Crankset and Shift Switch to meet the requirements of the growing number of e-bike riders.
New rotors and speed sensor placement
New for 2017 is a Speed Sensor (SM-DUE11) with a magnet that attaches discretely behind the rear rotor to bring e-bike integration to the next level.
This means that riders using one of two new (RT-EM900-M/800-M) 160mm or 180mm disc brake rotors on their e-bikes can use the new securely positioned rotor speed sensor and magnet bracket instead of the rear wheel (SM-DUE10) sensor and spoke magnet, providing a more robust and durable system with a more accurate way of monitoring riding data and performance.
Pictured: RT-EM900-M, RT-EM800-M, SM-DUE11
With the new rotors the magnet sits on the rotor whilst the speed sensor can be fixed to the inside of the chain stay.
The new speed sensor is compatible with both STEPS MTB (E8000) & City/Light Off-Road (E6000) series, and the e-bike specific rear rotor is compatible with CENTER LOCK disc brake between 8 to 11-speed bikes.
As the e-bike market becomes more diverse, Shimano now offers a new Drive Unit (E6002/12) into which riders can now simply plug in their compatible front and rear lights to the motor’s 2-Amp ports without needing to use any special adaptors (such as a SM-DUE01 unit).
This simplified and logical design means that the e-bike becomes ever-simpler to ‘plug and play’ and more importantly, gives riders the extra safety benefit of a large capacity battery to brightly light their way through city streets and urban paths.
As well as this the new Drive Unit comes with an improved Walk Assist operation. Riders can simply push and hold any switch button for 3-seconds to propel the bike forwards at walking pace. This can be especially helpful when carrying the bike up steep inclines.
In terms of compatibility, the new Drive Unit can be used with Shimano’s manual shifting components, hub gears (Alfine or Nexus, with an automatic shifting feature) or Di2 components.
Modified switches and crank arm
The crank arm now comes more clearance for shoes thanks to a sleeker profile on the 170 or 175mm versions. Meanwhile the STEPS City switches (SW-E6010-L/R) are updated with a more ergonomic and intuitive design. Switches on the left take care of choosing assist modes, with the middle button operating the cycle computer displays. With a Di2 system the large buttons on the right hand side switch take care of up and down shifts whilst the smaller middle button takes care of switching between automatic and manual shifting.
The rotors with the new speed sensor and the switches will be available in August 2017.
SHIMANO STEPS UP WITH NEW FIRMWARE TO TUNE ITS E-MTB BOOST AND TRAIL MODES
Adjust your drive unit’s e-power with on-the-trail Bluetooth firmware
SHIMANO STEPS MTB (E8000) riders are set for a spur from some new firmware that allows electric mountain bike riders to tune their Boost and Trail modes with High, Medium and Low settings across three different riding styles – Dynamic, Explorer and Custom – and whilst on the trail (via Bluetooth) or at home.
This broad range of settings will allow riders to customize their e-bike support levels to meet the optimum riding styles and demands they want to make from the powerful SHIMANO STEPS E-8000 drive unit.
In the ‘factory default’ Dynamic mode, the Boost setting (the maximum assistance level from the SHIMANO STEPS MTB system) will give riders a high level of pedal assistance whilst in Trail mode, riders will get a low level of assistance (relative to that mode). Eco mode will still give the most economical battery setting and the lowest assistance level.
Now a new Explorer mode gives a medium level of Boost assistance and a medium level of Trail assistance, plus Eco mode. As most e-bike riding is done at a comfortable Trail pace, this is designed to boost normal riding pace but scrub off some top end speed for more control in tight technical sections.
In the Custom mode, riders can programme their own preferences, so for example a rider may choose a conservative low Boost and low Trail mode to conserve battery and extend riding time, or a high Boost and high Trail mode to maximize speed.
Intuitive Trail assistance
What Trail mode provided in the Dynamic ‘default’ setting - and will continue to provide in the new Explorer and Custom settings - is to deliver you an intuitive and variable level of assistance depending on the force applied to your pedals, which is displayed by the graph on the E8000 computer display. Essentially the harder you pedal in Trail mode, the stronger the assistance you receive. It can range from low support if you´re on technically challenging terrain to a max torque of 70Nm to conquer steep inclines.
Change settings on the move
What’s more, all these settings can be adjusted and applied to the SHIMANO STEPS MTB system via the E-TUBE computer, tablet or phone app, so you can customize your e-bike ride in the workshop or on the trail like never before.
The firmware will be available to download from Shimano’s E-TUBE website from mid-August 2017.